Water fluoridation to cease

Thursday 31 January 2013

Water fluoridation to cease

Cairns Regional Council has voted to cease fluoridation of water supplies, supporting a policy established by the Local Government Association Queensland (LGAQ).

Mayor Bob Manning said the LGAQ determined its position based on three key points.

“In the LGAQ’s statement, it recognises that involuntary medication must not proceed without the consent of the community,” Cr Manning said.

“The policy states that express consent of the community should be sought before entering into a process such as fluoridation; and that oral health is a responsibility of the State Government and, as such, any financial burden should remain with the State.

“We back these sentiments and have chosen to cease fluoridation in accordance with the LGAQ’s position.”

In response to the Queensland Government’s Water Fluoridation Act 2008, fluoride was added to the Tunnel Hill (Copperlode Dam) water supply in 2009 and other water supplies in 2010.

Fluoridation currently costs Council about $300,000 in chemicals, staffing, testing, electricity and infrastructure.

Changes to treatment plant operations to remove fluoride dosing will occur by February 13, 2013, and associated infrastructure will be re-deployed into other operations, where possible.